A Rusty Nail

In honour of Good Friday, this poem by Robert W Service will be my contribution today to National Poetry Month:

A Rusty Nail

I ran a nail into my hand,
The wound was hard to heal;
So bitter was the pain to stand
I thought how it would feel,
To have spikes thrust through hands and feet,
Impaled by hammer beat.

Then hoisted on a cross of oak
Against the sullen sky,
With all about the jeering folk
Who joyed to see me die;
Die hardly in insensate heat,
With bleeding hands and feet.

Yet was it not that day of Fate,
Of cruelty insane,
Climaxing centuries of hate
That woke our souls to pain?
And are we not the living seed
Of those who did the deed!

Of course, with thankful heart I know
We are not fiends as then;
And in a thousand years or so
We may be gentle men.
But it has cost a poisoned hand,
And pain beyond a cry,
To make me strangely understand
A Cross against the sky.

Robert William Service

2 thoughts on “A Rusty Nail

    1. Thanks for your comment. A valid question indeed! There was once a genuine hope that human nature was improving with age and would continue to improve. However, the bad side of mankind has proved very resilient. 😦
      In the 60s we had such high hopes, but “the dawning of the age of Aquarius …harmony…sympathy and trust abounding” has been permanently shelved. Or maybe a victim of 9/11?

      Liked by 1 person

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